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#howiAMACO InstaFeature - Edie Frylings

Edie Frylings

Instagram: @masterpiecedoodle


Edie's bright, screenprinted wares beautifully combine craft, color, and clean lines. A wonderful marriage of modern pops of color with geometric patterning reminiscent of traditional Moroccan mosaics, Edie's plates, platters, and planters add lovely detail to any environment.

How did you come to be interested in working with clay?

My interest in clay is so old that I can barely remember how it started. I was an artsy and creative kid, and my parents were incredible at making sure that my interests were being nurtured - to the point that I rarely got in trouble for painting walls without permission, or generally making colorful, sticky messes all over the place. Their patience and understanding is something to be admired.

Early on, probably around third grade, my parents enrolled me in a kids' pottery class. I remember thinking the potter's wheel was pure magic, and the crushing disappointment when we were too slow to pick up my projects from the studio. To this day the smell of a ceramics studio brings me back to those classes I took as a child.

In junior and senior high school I signed up for every single art class available, and clay was, of course, a medium that I got to use for the occasional project. I loved it all, though: acrylics, charcoal, screen printing, pastels, clay ... my relationship with art has never been, and never will be, monogamous. But there is something about clay that has always brought me back to it. Case and point: my senior year of high school I enrolled in an independent study with the intent of working on my AP art portfolio that consisted of extravagant doodles in pen, charcoal, and graphite. But instead of using this time to draw, I found myself glued to the potter's wheel.

In college I chose to study sociology instead of art, but I couldn't keep my hands away from clay, and so throughout school I found the time to take classes at the local potter's guild. After graduating and moving to a different city I, along with my husband, looked at potential living situations by typical measures: proximity to grocery store, restaurants, and, ya know, pottery studios. That's normal, right?

What inspires your work?

I have an obsession with geometry, both in three and two dimensions. While working before care at an elementary school, I made time to read for 10-15 minutes each morning before the kids arrived. During this time I slowly made my way through A Beginner's Guide to Constructing the Universe: The Mathematical Archetypes of Nature, Art and Science. This book opened my eyes to the geometry that surrounds us, from the tiniest of particles to the massive swirl of galaxies. It's an engaging, accessible introduction to seemingly complex concepts and I would recommend to everyone! This book introduced me to a wide range of topics, including the platonic solids - a set of five shapes that are built from a single regular shape, such as an equilateral triangle. It wasn't long after learning about these shapes that I knew I needed to figure out a way to build them with clay.

For a while I was content building these shapes and playing with different glaze applications, including raku, but it wasn't enough. A Beginner's Guide to Constructing the Universe also introduced me to the art of Islamic Geometric Design. By using only a compass and ruler, the most incredible, complex designs can be created. It wasn't long before I knew I needed to figure out a way to combine the three dimensional shapes I was building with the two dimensional Islamic geometric designs I was constructing on paper. And so I learned to adapt underglaze into a screen printing medium and to make my own screens. The rest, as they say, is history.

What’s your favorite thing about clay?

Clay satisfies my constant need to experiment. There's only so much that you can do with paint, or pens, or pastels ... but clay? Clay is exceptional. Clay offers the opportunity for you to use all that you have learned, no matter the medium.

Which AMACO products do you always find yourself going back to? How do these products speak to your work?

I use Velvet underglaze daily in my work. I alter the underglaze by evaporating a lot of the water so that it is thick, and then add a clear acrylic screen printing medium so that it resembles a screen printing ink. Velvet underglaze is an integral part of my work, and it won't be long before I own the entire palette.

Who was your childhood hero?

Lisa Simpson. She's the reason I chose to play the clarinet (a required step before saxophone at my junior high, although I never made the switch.) Her smarts, wit, and sense of justice always made me proud to be a girl.

What's your favorite book?

I refuse to have a single favorite book, but I make sure to read Matilda about once a year. She was another childhood hero of mine. I love seeing strong, smart girls taking charge of their life and not letting anyone make them feel the lesser.

As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?

In third grade I wrote down that I wanted to be a theoretical physicist. That same year I got a legit telescope and my dad and I started to attend star parties. I still have issues spelling "theoretical physicist," and can barely understand what they do, but the stars will always have my heart.